Friday, June 27, 2014


My husband with our youngest daughter

Last night, a beautiful female woodpecker flew into our window.  She survived; stunned and possibly wounded.  My husband and I ran outside and he embraced her in a towel.  When she started to come to, she leapt out of his embrace onto our deck.  She could not fly.

Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.  Proverbs 27:6 (KJV)

According to Proverbs, we can count on being wounded by friends much like unexpectedly flying into glass windows.  The good news is that Jesus sees all of us, every hurt, every joy; everything about us.  So when we are wounded, completely stunned from impact, and we find ourselves unable to fly that’s the perfect time to allow ourselves to become embraced by our Heavenly Father.  He is the only one who has the ability to see our wound and be able to bring true comfort during the healing process. 

And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Comforter, who will never leave you. He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth.  John 14:16-17a (NLT)

Unbeknownst to the woodpecker, she was in the safest place she could be; held in the hands of my husband wrapped in a blanket.  It wasn’t until she panicked in her distress that she leapt out and attempted to fly. 

Have you ever tried to “fly” before its time; before your wound has healed?  I know that many times I’ve found myself wounded from a situation and then instead of allowing God to hold me I attempt to continue to carry on with life ignoring the fact that I’m wounded.  Just like that bird, I tell myself, “I’m fine.  I can handle this on my own.  I don’t need anyone’s help.  I’m going to just pick myself up again and continue on with life as if nothing happened.”  Ignoring a wound doesn’t make it go away.

What is the solution?  Forgiveness.

Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me?  Up to seven times?”  Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.”  Matthew 18:21-22 (NIV)

Forgiveness can be a tough word but it doesn’t have to be.  Forgiving someone doesn’t mean you are saying, “It’s ok that you hurt me”.  Forgiving someone is a heart issue.  It’s you choosing to say, in your heart, that you forgive and will not hold onto bitterness.  Choosing to forgive doesn’t mean that what that person said or did was right.

Forgiveness is freedom for the forgiver.

When we choose to forgive those that hurt us, it allows our wound to heal enabling us to fly.  Only in the embrace of our Heavenly Father can we find true peace and healing.

Have you currently been wounded by someone?  How are you choosing to respond?

Monday, June 16, 2014

Drop Your Weapon

This week I hopefully avoided wounding people with my crossbow. I say “hopefully” because I don’t want to be overly confident.  I know that I have wounded people in my life before using my crossbow with the intent to wound deeply.  This week was different for me and maybe I’ve grown up a bit.  What am I talking about?  I’m talking about engaging in spiritual debates and arguments; quarrels.  I choose to drop my weapon.

Quarrel: 1) an angry argument or disagreement 2) the term for the ammunition used in a crossbow.

Titus 3 begins by reminding us to be people of peace.  “1 Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good, 2 to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and always to be gentle toward everyone.”  …That sounds easy enough, right?

Then in the middle of Titus 3 are verses 9-11, “9 But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and arguments and quarrels about the law, because these are unprofitable and useless. 10 Warn a divisive person once, and then warn them a second time. After that, have nothing to do with them. 11 You may be sure that such people are warped and sinful; they are self-condemned.”  …There it is, the tough stuff; arguments and quarrels. 

When I was in high school I loved to debate my beliefs especially on religion and politics.  Unfortunately in my immaturity, I continued to stay on that path, obliterating anyone who disagreed with my self-proclaimed “superior” viewpoint and absolutely looked down upon the opposing side as inferior.  –Can you say PRIDE?!  In this passage the Bible is speaking of arguments and quarrels within the Body of Christ.  More precisely it is speaking of the arguments over the little details of our faith verses the main staples such as salvation, loving God and loving others. When you read Titus 3:9-11, which side are you viewing yourself on?  Do you engage in spiritual debates resulting in division amongst your fellow believers or do you choose to drop the matter?

In the Thayers Greek Lexicon the word Machē is the Greek word used for quarrel in Titus 3:9 and comes from the root word machomai which means to fight of those who engage in a war of words.

 How many times do we find ourselves doing this with other followers of Christ?  Can you think of a time when it has ever been profitable?  Did you find that driving your point across resulted in unity or division?

I’m continuing to grow up spiritually since my high school days and the Holy Spirit has opened my eyes to the times I’ve been prideful and divisive and to when I’ve passed the test and dropped my weapon.  I’m continuing to learn as I go but it’s not easy, but I’d much rather fight against my true enemy the devil than my brother and sister in Christ.

Ephesians 6:12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

Towards the end of Titus 3 is verse 14 which says,” Our people must learn to devote themselves to doing what is good, in order to provide for urgent needs and not live unproductive lives.”  I think that sums it up best; we are called to live productive lives not wasted on arguments on the little details of our faith.  Let’s choose to drop our weapons that we are pointing at each other and choose unity in the Body of Christ.

Have you ever found yourself in a spiritual debate with another believer?  How did you handle it?  What was the outcome?